Did you know water makes up to 80% of a dog's body? It is necessary for almost all vital functions, regulates temperature, and filters waste from the body. If your dog loses even one tenth of the water in his body, he is in serious trouble.
Here are 7 things to keep in mind this Summer
1. Clean Bowl
Bacteria is microscopic, so you do not see it when it begins to develop. This means you need to wash your dog’s bowl before it looks like it needs to be washed. Bacteria can make your dog sick, and it can also make the water’s taste unappealing. If your dog does not like the taste of the water, he might not drink, and can become dehydrated.
2. Alone Time
Make sure dogs who are left alone have ample water to last while you’re gone. If the water bowl is empty when you get home, you should probably be providing more water. Also, lots of dogs have a tendency to knock over their water bowl. If this occurs, they are left the rest of the time you are gone without water. Especially heavy bowls, or very wide bowls with a low center of gravity are good for dogs who like to tip their bowls over. You can also leave more than one bowl out, just to make sure. Remember, one can never provide too much water for a dog.
3. Type of Bowl
Many vets suggest that stainless steel bowls are best. Ceramic and stoneware bowls can develop tiny cracks and chips which can harbor bacteria. Plastic bowls can develop scratches and divots which make nice homes for bacteria as well. This is not to say that you cannot have a plastic or stoneware bowl, but they must be used with accompanying vigilance.
4. Chained Dog
Dog chaining is not suggested and is illegal in many places. However, if you insist on chaining your dog, be sure that his water is located very close to the chain’s anchor. If the dog wraps his chain around the pole or tree to which he is attached, he may not be able to reach his water. Furthermore, bear in mind that dogs can wrap their chain around other objects, and even their own legs, or they can overturn their water with their chain, so it is difficult to predict the best spot to place their water bowl. The best way to make sure a chained dog is receiving sufficient water is to check them regularly, and never leave them chained for long periods of time.
5. Potty Mouth
Make it a habit to keep the lid on the toilet down, or to keep the bathroom door closed. Bacteria builds up in the toilet bowl and it can make your dog sick. Also, toilet cleaning products can make your dog extremely ill.
6. Beach Bums
Never let your dog drink water at the beach. Saltwater and brackish water will dehydrate your dog. Even freshwater rivers and lakes contain tons of microorganisms that can wreak havoc on your dog’s digestive system. It's always best to carry some sort of bottled water with you.
The more exercise you dog gets, the more water he needs. When you go for hikes, long walks, or even just play sessions at the park, make sure you bring a portable dog bowl and a bottle full of clean water.
Common Symptoms of Dehydration:
-Skin does not spring back when pinched.
-Press a spot on the gums until it turns white, after release it will remain white.